Washington, D.C., March 6, 2009 — The AP reported that Secretary of Energy Steven Chu said that Yucca Mountain was no longer an option for storing the nation’s nuclear waste at a hearing before the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee. When asked by Senator John McCain (R-AZ) if scrapping the Yucca Mountain project was also the opinion of the president, Chu responded in the affirmative. Indeed, in President Barack Obama’s budget proposal, he has cut almost all federal funding for the project.
When asked for alternatives, Chu was quoted by the AP, saying, “The interim storage of waste (at reactors), the solidification of waste, is something we can do today. The NRC has said we can do it safely.” Chu said a long-term solution is still being developed by the administration.
McCain and Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) expressed their disappointment with the administration’s decision saying the scrapping of Yucca Mountain presents a roadblock to the growth nuclear energy.
Since 1982 $13.5 billion has been spent on the project.
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